A photo quilt is a wonderful way to keep beautiful memories alive through photographs and patchwork. When it comes to photographs, there are several great ways to design them into your quilt to tell any particular story. You can create collages of family members together during special moments of your life, picture of good friends and happy times, photos of ancestors to remind you of your roots, and other memorable pictures. All of these are preserved on your quilt which you can hang on your wall for all you friends and family members to enjoy. To make a photo quilt hanging, here’s how to do it.
- Prepare your quilt fabric. The recommended types of fabric that are good for quilting projects are cotton blends. Calico is one type of fabric that is ideal. For photo transfers, choose fabrics that are plain, preferably muslin or broadcloth. Get them in pale colors that are perfect for your photographs. Make sure you are able to pre-wash your fabrics before using them for your project as some fabrics such as cotton tend to shrink a bit after they are washed.
- Edit your photos. As soon as you have downloaded your photographs as image files you can edit them through your graphics program. You may also do your cropping, size adjustment, and color retouches as well. Save your images as JPEG files. Once these photos are edited and saved on a disk, you may begin to determine the square sizes of your quilt.
- Work on your squares. Try to keep the design of your quilt as uncomplicated as possible. You may want to make pattern of your quilt on grid paper, arranging your design according to the number of images you have. Before cutting out your squares, make sure that you have enough allowance on your fabric sufficient for your photographs. If your image has a size of around 2x3 inches, your square should measure 6x6 inches. You will also need to add an allowance for your seam around your square measuring about 5/8th of an inch. Proceed to cut your quilt squares.
- Print your images onto your transfer paper and to fabric. Look for your image files which you will find on your graphics program. Go to the print menu and pick on the setting for highest quality graphics. Feed your paper onto your computer’s printer, following your manufacturer’s instructions on printing. You must take out your paper from your printer right away and allow it to dry on a flat surface. After they have completely dried, cut them out with some allowances on their sides. Place your transfer paper at the center of your square of fabric. Follow manufacturer’s instructions to iron on. Give them time to cool out.
- Create your quilt. Arrange your squares alternating with colors. Place pins on the squares with their correct sides together. Stitch them up with your sewing machine. Press the allowances of your seams open and begin to do your trimming around the corners. This will now be the front side of your quilt. Place in quilt batting as a lining for the whole quilt. Pin it on the edges of the wrong side of your quilt. Use your sewing machine to tack down the sides. Get some backing fabric and cut it the equivalent size of the panel of your quilt. Now join your backing to your panel together with their correct sides. Pin and stitch with your machine allowing a seam opening of about 6 inches. Cut a few corners on the edges and turn your quilt through the seam opening with its correct side out. Use slip stitches to sew your opening.
Your quilt is now ready to be hung on your wall, used as a sofa throw, or any other decorative idea you wish to use it for.